Fishing for carp on new waters can be daunting at times. It’s hard to know exactly where to fish, plus whichever swim you do choose you’ll most likely need to spend more time with a marker rod to map out the topography of the bed, and this process could end up spooking fish and ruining your chances of a big carp!
There is a theory held by some very good anglers that someone new to a lake has a good chance of catching plenty of carp, and in some cases the bigger fish, because their methods are completely different to the “norm” used by regular anglers on that particular venue. New anglers may not be influenced by any common trends or by fishing in the regular hotspots on that lake, and the bait used can sometimes be completely different as well. It has been noticed by many frustrated carp fishermen that newbies seem to catch the fish they are targeting!
If this is what gives any new angler a slight advantage then it suggests that having a different perspective on rigs, bait, tactics and presentation can produce great carp fishing results on almost any venue, whether you've fished it before or not. Yes, I agree it does sometimes pay to know what everyone else around the lake is using and catching good carp on, and then simply use that bait source. But I think using frequently introduced baits really depends on where in the cycle that common bait is at. If a large majority of a lake’s carp have been caught using specific fishing methods or caught with a certain type of bait, then it may be the right time to focus on a new fishing approach.
I have seen how a new fishing method has worked numerous times in the past. I once witnessed a newbie angler on RMC’s Kingsmead one lake, where he spodded out 4 gallons of live maggots in 2 hours, placed a medusa maggot rig on top and within 2 hours he caught a 34 pound mirror - I know because I weighed it for him! But 4 gallons of maggots, who else would be doing that!
Another time, I seen a guy pre-baiting a swim with clusters of pellets tied into PVA bags, and they were all the same size and shape. He also didn't place anything else in the swim, just the PVA bags of pellet. I heard that when he fished the swim a few weeks later, he had one of the busiest weekends that anyone had ever witnessed. He caught numerous carp up to 30 pounds plus!
I have actually seen something similar to this method many years ago at Larford lake. My angling partner turned up late for one session and it was nearly dark by the time he got the rods out. He didn’t have time to change his rigs, well that was his excuse anyway! He took out a rod and it was still set up with rig and bait attached. The two 10mm boilies were all cracked, discoloured and even mouldy. Yet they were the same boilies he had been using on the last session at Larford lake. He cast the rig under a tree and within two hours he had caught the biggest common carp in the lake! (31.08 - Picture below) Now, I don’t believe this was coincidence, do you?
Of all the great fishing sessions I’ve had over the years, as well as those I’ve witnessed or heard about, it seems that maybe up to 80% have been successful because the angler has used a completely new carp fishing approach. From my angling experiences I have concluded that a new approach towards rigs and bait can work well for catching out those crafty carp. So, don’t be afraid to be different to the other anglers on any new lake. It just might be the recipe for a new personal best fish!